Karsten Troyke (born Karsten Bertolt Sellhorn on 14 August 1960 in Berlin) is a German non-Jewish singer of Jewish songs, as well as an actor and speaker. He is most known for being an interpreter of Yiddish song in spite of not being Jewish himself, just his father's part of the family.
Performing on stage since 1982, Troyke had earlier worked as a gardener and with mentally handicapped children. He studied singing (with Leonore Gendries) as well as drama and speaking, and in 1990 he gave up his work to dedicate himself completely to musical performance and theater. Troyke participated in radio plays, worked as a voice actor (dubbing), and participated in various stage plays.
As a singer, his album Yiddish Anders (1992) received the praise of German record critics. Jidische Vergessene Lieder (1997) contained previously unpublished songs of Sara Bialas Tenenberg, who became his mentor for the Yiddish language.
In his performances, Troyke worked with Bettina Wegner, Suzanna and the Trio Scho. His interpretations of the songs of Georg Kreisler received mention in the writer/musician's 2005 biography. In 2006, two documentaries, Yiddish Soul and Concert Yiddish Soul, featured Troyke, Shura Lipovsky, Myriam Fuks, and The KlezRoym.
Troyke gives workshops on interpretation of Yiddish songs and teaches rare songs from his collection. he was guest professor at the Jewish Music Institute of SOAS London, at Carleton College Northfield (Minnesota) and at least for the summer school of Centre Medem, Paris.
- Fritz Mordechai Kaufmann Old Yiddish Songs, reprint from Berlin 1920 (2001), with translations by Karsten Troyke
- 1991 Shuloym Alaykhem (1991)
- 1992 Yiddish Anders (Hermann Anders - Band)
- 1994 Leg den Kopf auf meine Knie, with writings of Selma Meerbaum-Eisinger, Itzik Manger und Abraham Sutzkever
- 1996 Grüne Blätter
- 1997 Jidische Vergessene Lieder
- 1999 Shuloym Alaykhem - The Old Yiddish Songs
- 1998 Troyke singt Kreisler
- 2001 Chanson Total with Suzanna
- 2005 Grüne Blätter (remastered)
- 2006 Tango Oyf Yiddish
- 2011: Unser war die Nacht (Troyke, Suzanna & Trio Scho), iTunes edition only
- 2012: Live - Klezmer Konzert (Troyke, Trio Scho), iTunes edition only
- 2012 Tango Oyf Yiddish Vol.2
- 2014 "Yiddish Troubadour"
- 1993 Tu Balval, Suzanna
- 1994 Váci Utca, Peter M. Haas, Martin Frisch
- 1995 T&FF Rudolstadt '94
- 1997 Diadromes, Alec Kopyt & Poza (klezmer and Gypsy music)
- 1998 Dui Dui, Suzanna
- 1999 Jazz Lyrik Prosa II
- 1999 Old Russian Popsongs, Trio Scho
- 1999 Wege, Bettina Wegner
- 2000 Mit Josh um halb acht, reading of Josh Sellhorn
- 2000 Lachen und lachen lassen
- 2001 Schlaf schneller, Genosse, Ursula Karusseit, Günther Junghans, Trio Scho
- 2001 Alles, was ich wünsche, Bettina Wegner
- 2002 Schweineparadies, Die Bösen Mädchen
- 2003 Mein Bruder, Bettina Wegner
- 2004 Liebeslieder, Bettina Wegner
- 2005 Jazz Lyrik Prosa III
- 2005 Der Entenkönig, a radio play
- 2008: a Spil af Yiddish, Mark Aizikovitch
- 2008: Abschiedstournee, Bettina Wegner
- 2009: Sol Sajn: Jiddische Musik in Deutschland und ihre Einflüsse (Yiddish Music in Germany and Its Influences) (Troyke Vol.2 and Vol.4), Bear Family
- Gruber, Ruth Ellen (2002). Virtually Jewish: Reinventing Jewish Culture in Europe (Google eBook). Berkeley / Los Angeles / London: University of California Press. p. 206.
- "...non-Jewish groups or performers - including...the singer Karsten Troyke - became interested in klezmer and Yiddish music in the early and mid-1980s." (Ruth Ellen Gruber: Virtually Jewish: Reinventing Jewish Culture in Europe, 2002.)